iPhone X Moved From Pixel 2 XL to iPhone X - Disapointing Pictures

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by sn0warmy, Apr 11, 2018.

  1. sn0warmy macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #1
    I've been a pretty diehard Android (mainly Nexus/Pixel) fan since 2010 with short stints with previous iPhones. However, the redesign of the iPhone X had me intrigued as well as coming to the realization that a lot of the apps I use to communicate and work with my business clients simply perform much better on IOS than they do on Android.

    Because of this, I decided to purchase an iPhone X to test for a month or two before potentially making the switch permanently. Overall, I'm happy with the phone, minus my inability to snap good quality pictures with it. No matter what I do, the pictures turn out terrible with this phone, when compared to my Pixel 2 XL. The iPhone X pics always come out either too saturated, too grainy, or simply can't focus on the correct aspect of the photo, even if I try to manually set the focus. ...I just don't get it.

    Sadly, so far the iPhone X has provided sub-par pictures to represent memories that my Pixel would have otherwise gotten just right. I'm not here to bash the iPhone X camera, per se. I am simply looking for input from others on some potential settings I could change to fix the image quality to be at least close to what the Pixel 2 provides when just quickly snapping a photo. I'm not one to spend time editing photos after the fact so if that's the solution then my time with the iPhone might be shorter lived than I would have hoped.

    For some context, I just took some back to back photos to provide an example. This was literally just "point and shoot" to represent the typical way I'd snap a picture in the moment.

    iPhone X
    [​IMG]

    Pixel 2 XL
    [​IMG]

    iPhone X
    [​IMG]

    Pixel 2 XL
    [​IMG]


    And another crappy one from the iPhone X
    [​IMG]


    I don't think anyone could argue that the image quality from the iPhone outperformed the Pixel in this case. It makes the edges of the dog bed look red, when in real life they are grey/tan (as properly colored in the Pixel 2 XL pics). It also removed a ton of detail from her fur where the Pixel was able to properly capture that detail. Unfortunately, this is a proper representation of the pictures I've been taking with the iPhone X over the last week I've had it.

    ...and here's another I took of my brother-in-law and my nephew. This picture doesn't remotely represent the true color and detail of that moment. It made the red pillow WAY more punch-y than it is in real life, it soften/blurred the skin tone and removed a ton of detail from both of their faces, as well as my brother's arm. And the space between the pillows and the wall just look super grainy.

    [​IMG]


    In the end, I'm looking for input on settings I may be able to change to correct this poor image quality. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. thecarrot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2010
    #2
    The Pixel 2 XL has an objectively better camera than the X.
     
  3. forestinjersey macrumors member

    forestinjersey

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #3
    I don't have an iPhone 10, I have a 7 but I did have a Pixel 2 and the camera was hands down the best i have ever used.
     
  4. WilliamG macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle
    #4
    Don’t doubt it for a second. I know reviews say lots of things, but the iPhone X has an OK camera and nothing more. Other companies are leagues ahead with their processing/hardware.
     
  5. MistrSynistr macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 15, 2014
    #5
    Highlights are down in the Pixel and the structure cranked up. Which does make it a more visually appeasing photo.
     
  6. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

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    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #6
    IF you dislike the X images compared to the pixel and images are very important, I would go back to the Pixel.
     
  7. ACST Suspended

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    Sep 5, 2016
  8. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #8
    Images are important. But the iPhone really has improved my overall mobile experience in terms of client communication and apps really do feel like they are better polished and smooth on IOS. I'd just like to see if there is a way I can tweak the iPhone images to be a bit better and closer to the quality of the Pixel.

    I understand that the Pixel's camera/processing software is better. But considering that the iPhone X received a 97 DXO score compared to the Pixel's 98, I'd expect the difference in quality to be much more subtle than it is.


    Do you happen to know what settings I could tweak with the iPhone camera to correct the photo output to be at least somewhat as 'natural' and true-to-life as the Pixel?

    Since I had both phones out, I decided to take them both with me on my morning walk with the dog. I wanted to see if in brighter conditions the difference would be less noticeable. It wasn't...

    Pixel 2 XL
    [​IMG]

    iPhone X
    [​IMG]


    Pixel 2 XL
    [​IMG]

    iPhone X
    [​IMG]
     
  9. TheSkywalker77 macrumors 6502a

    TheSkywalker77

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2017
    Location:
    Florida
    #9
    As much of an Apple sheep that I am, I gotta give it to the Pixel on camera quality. :p
     
  10. BugeyeSTI macrumors 68020

    BugeyeSTI

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    Aug 19, 2017
    Location:
    Arizona
    #10
    I thought the first set of pics you showed were better on the Pixel, on these photos I prefer the iPhones photos
     
  11. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #11
    Yeah, some of this is personal preference. But even those second set of photos are too 'punch-y' on the iPhone. The Pixel nailed the color and detail perfectly, the pictures from the Pixel mirror exactly what you'd see if you were standing right there. The iPhone just seemed to over-process the hell out of them. Especially with that bench. the mesh in the bench pops way too much on the iPhone, almost making me dizzy.

    And look how much it makes that white house pop out. It just looks odd.

    Essentially, I just want to tone down how much the iPhone tries to over-highlight certain aspect of the images it takes.
     
  12. WilliamG macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle
    #12
    As an iPhone X user, the difference to me is night and day in favor of the XL. There's so much edge-enhancement on the iPhone X on the house pictures that it's insane how they're even comparable in DXO's scoring. Look at that cluster of houses on the right. So clear and defined and "natural" on the XL. And that's just that area.

    I'm going to flat-out say that anyone who thinks the iPhone X is the better on the second set of photos (let alone the first), has absolutely ZERO clue about image quality.

    If you prefer the slightly "punchier" contrast on the iPhone X, that's easily achieved with a quick tweak on the XL. But the overall image quality of the X is a disaster by comparison.

    Look at that grey roof on the middle house. You can make out the shingles on the XL, whereas it's just pretty much a slick of black on the X. I bet in real life it's NOT black.

    Look at the branches on those trees in the foreground. The difference is huge.

    Yet... DXO is 98 vs 97.

    Lol.
     
  13. Jim165 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2015
    Location:
    Texas
    #13
    Those pics from the X are pretty terrible. My 8+ shoots better pics than that. Your phone is apparently defective...
     
  14. JPack macrumors 68040

    JPack

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2017
    #14
    The iPhone has one of the smallest camera sensors on the market compared to Samsung and Google.

    The sensor literally captures less light and detail from the environment. Apple relies on software to make up for the difference. But in many cases like this one, you can tell the difference where Apple overcompensates.
     
  15. BugeyeSTI macrumors 68020

    BugeyeSTI

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Location:
    Arizona
    #15
    Ok. I’m entitled to my opinion as are you. Saying someone is flat out wrong based on your beliefs or opinion is what’s wrong with society nowadays... I’m sure we could look at the same painting and you may love it where I might think it’s trash. I wouldn’t ever say your assessment was completely wrong and you obviously don’t know what good art is..
    --- Post Merged, Apr 11, 2018 ---
    I agree with what you’re saying but I also noticed the lack of the shadow on the Pixel’s photo of the bench. It’s almost not there as well as the shadowing on the grass in the second photo.. I’m not saying the iPhones camera is better than the Pixel overall because it obviously isn’t.
     
  16. shanshor macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2008
    #16
    Oddly enough, I literally just made the same switch as you. 2 XL to iPhone X. You’re right. The camera on the pixel is just so much better.
     
  17. DNichter macrumors 604

    DNichter

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2015
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #17
    It's a personal preference, but if slight picture improvements are that important to you, then yes you should go back to the Pixel 2. Use what is best for you.
     
  18. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #18
    LOL! Doubtful.


    I'd argue that it's more than just a "slight" difference. But really, as I mentioned before, I do love everything else about the X and in my short stint with IOS, I really do feel that the overall experience with UI feel and app behavior is much more fluid and polished than even the most updated Android 8.1 is.

    In the end, I'm just hoping some settings tweaks in the camera will help tone down the pictures the iPhone X takes, to make the outcome more natural. I don't expect to get the same level of finite detail as the 2 XL can produce. I just want to get the iPhone to stop trying to over-process or over-enhance the pictures.


    Yeah, it's kind of ridiculous. Especially considering the DXO scores are nearly the same (97 vs 98). Kind of just shows how biased DXO is. And now I can't help but laugh at those Youtube reviewers who swear that the iPhone's camera is still the best.

    But I still don't want to give up the iPhone as I'm getting very comfortable with IOS and I think I already prefer it over even the purest form of Android on the 2 XL. If I have to live with sub-par photos then so-be-it. But there's gotta be a way to improve the iPhone image quality. Especially since the issues I'm experiencing seem to be software related.
     
  19. WilliamG macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Location:
    Seattle
    #19
    Opinion about what constitutes “art” is not the same as what constitutes what one LITERALLY sees in real life compared to a photo, OR what constitutes “image quality.” Arguing about art is indeed a waste of time.

    There is no “belief” in terms of image quality. You can analyze these images on a per-pixel level and know for a FACT that the iPhone X camera is trash compared to the Pixel XL.

    What’s wrong with today’s society is many other things.
     
  20. pika2000 macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    #20
    Don't have either Pixel 2 nor iPhone X, but maybe you can try enabling HDR to be on all the time?
     
  21. cynics macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2012
    #21

    Don't know if that is intentional or not but a lot of data is being removed between the iPhone X and your post here. Maybe a compatibility option due to high efficiency encoding?

    I tagged each for easy comparison.

    Screen Shot 2018-04-11 at 8.06.49 PM.png
    (Click)

    Taking into account the iPhone photos are less then a quarter of the data I say its doing pretty good.
     
  22. Dodgeman macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2016
    #22
    Lots of interesting points.
    I do notice the difference. If you started with one phone (basically if the photos were not compareded side by side) then I doubt it would he much if a discrepancy.
    Either way that is a difference not sure that would be that big of a deal to me.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 11, 2018 ---
    Does the 8 plus and the X share the same camera characteristics?
     
  23. nordique macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2014
    #23
    I have both, the X is still a great camera. I have no problems with it. The Pixel 2 XL is better though, yes. Especially the front facing camera. That is one area Apple has really lost out, I'd say the rear camera is still an excellent shooter but the front facing camera is subpar these days for a flagship.
     
  24. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #24
    Interesting. The Pixel's photos were downloaded directly from Google Photos. However, even though I have Google Photos installed on my iPhone, and those iPhone photos were auto uploaded to Google Photos, the only way I was able to get the iPhone photos to become JPegs (rather than the default HEIC codec), was to select the photos from the built in Photos app on the iPhone and email them to myself. This is likely the cause of the data loss.

    Even if I try downloading the photos taken with the iPhone directly from Google Photos, they are still HEIC formatted and can't be uploaded to Flickr or elsewhere.

    Regardless, I'm currently looking at the iPhone's photos directly on the iPhone and they look the same as the ones that were exported and shared here. So while I do think that is a fair call out, I really think it's a moot point.
     
  25. nordique macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2014
    #25
    Unfortunately, the main reason the Pixel 2 XL camera is so much better isn't a setting based issue (i.e. changing the exposure manually or something on the X camera) but rather the imaging processing that Google has is some magic fairy dust in there. I think the iPhone X has great pics as well, if you're going to take close-ups I recommend using the telephoto lens for those. The regular camera is really good for scenery shots. Its one of the best rear cameras on a phone, but the Pixel 2 XL is just better because of the image processing.

    You can take really good iPhone X pics, the iPhone X really shines with scenery pictures more so than closeups.

    Pixel 2 XL is a great shooter though. The front facing shots are the best on a smartphone today, that's where it really shines compared to the other top end flagships.
     

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